Effects of socio-economic status on breastfeeding duration and exclusivity
AuthorsPalmer, Anna E.
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractAim: To assess socio-economic factors as predictors of breastfeeding duration and exclusivity. Design: Longitudinal prospective study, The Prevalence of Infant Food Allergy Study. Setting: Winchester and Eastleigh Primary Care Trust. Subjects: 905 singletons born, data were collected by maternal interview and 12 month food diary. Results: Overall breastfeeding was initiated by 91.4% of mothers, and by 1, 3 and 6 months of age the proportions being breastfed were 75.2%, 57.6% and 35.5%. By 1, 4 and 6 months of age the proportions being exclusively breastfed were 44.2%, 29.7% and 1.3%. There were clear socio-economic differences and mothers with a higher education were over three times more likely (OR 3.75, 95% CI 2.03-6.93) to initiate breastfeeding, two times more likely to be breastfeeding at 2 months (OR 2.71, 95% CI 1.59-4.62) and nearly twice as likely to be breastfeeding at 6 months (OR 1.96, 95% CI 1.05-3.67) compared to mothers with a lower education. Women with a higher education were also three times more likely to exclusively breastfeed for 2 months (OR 3.05, 95% CI 1.15-6.16) compared to mothers with a lower education. Exclusive breastfeeding was mostly lost due to the introduction of whey formula, with 91.43% of mothers in the low education group choosing to introduce whey formula first. Conclusions: Low socio-economic maternal status reduced breastfeeding initiation, duration and 2 month exclusivity. Support for mothers with a low socio-economic status need to be established to improve breastfeeding rates in this population. Overall only 1.3% of babies were being exclusively breastfed. Mothers need to be properly prepared and supported if the WHO’s 6 month exclusivity is to be met by the larger population.
PublisherUniversity of Chester
TypeThesis or dissertation
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